Granite Mountain Hotshots

Thirty-four wildland firefighters died in the line of duty this year. Some of those fatalities were isolated incidents, but one event captured the nation's attention, sparking a larger conversation about the new dangers firefighters face.

That event unfolded in central Arizona the afternoon of June 30, a Sunday.

"I'm here with Granite Mountain Hot Shots. Our escape route has been cut off," says a crew boss on recently released radio traffic from the Yarnell Hill Fire. "We are preparing a deployment site, and I'll give you a call when we are under the shelters.

Capitol Media Services photo by Howard Fischer

A long-awaited report Wednesday on the Yarnell Hill Fire from last June finally provided at least some answers as to how — and more importantly why — 19 hotshots died. Arizona Public Radio’s Howard Fischer takes a closer look.

The state Industrial Commission Wednesday imposed the maximum $559,000 fine possible on the state Forestry Division following the deaths of 19 firefighters earlier this year at Yarnell Hill. Arizona Public Radio's Howard Fischer reports.

PRESCOTT, Ariz. - The investigation into the deaths of 19 firefighters in Arizona's Yarnell Hill Fire concluded with several recommendations. Many hope that the report released Saturday leads to wildland firefighting policy changes.

Thousands of firefighters are gathered in Prescott, Ariz., today, to honor the Granite Mountain Hotshots, the 19 firefighters who were killed by a wildfire on Sunday, June 30. The speakers include Gov. Jan Brewer and Vice President Joe Biden.

"These men were some of the strongest, most disciplined" people in the world, Biden said, calling them "an elite unit, in every sense of that phrase."

Yarnell Hill Fire Evacuees

Jul 1, 2013

Some 400 firefighters are on the scene of the Yarnell Hill Fire burning about 30 miles southwest of Prescott. The blaze killed 19 firefighters on Sunday afternoon. It also has forced the evacuation of hundreds of people. An unknown number of homes have been lost. Arizona Public Radio's Laurel Morales is in Prescott. She spoke  live on All Things Considered with KNAU's Terry Ward...